Office 2010 – worth it??

Anyone who knows me decently well, knows my hatred for all things MS on one hand, and the extreme love for MS Office on the other. I think that Office is one of the most useful piece of software ever written.

Anyway, the generous folks at MS were good enough to give me a copy of the Technical Preview of Office 2010 sometime back. I started using it almost ten days back, and so far I have been pretty pleased. I was never a huge fan of Office 2007, as I was never comfortable with the ribbon. However, Office 2007 is the standard install at ISB, and having gotten used to the ribbon over the last three months, it was not too difficult to transition to Office 2010. I did not install the newer version of Outlook, and from what I have read, it seems to be a major improvement. So this is in no way a complete review.

Most of Office 2010 is pretty similar to the previous version, but there are a few enhancements that I particularly like.

  1. Excel Sparklines – create good looking graphs in cells easily. Minimal formatting, but immensely useful for dashboard kind of stuff.
  2. Insert Screenshot – immensely useful! How many times did we have to do Print Scrn to paste pics from other widows. Kiss goodbye to such troubles. The new office suite gives immense control on the kind of screen shots you can include.
  3. Advanced Picture Tools – from a damn cool background removal tool, to advanced Photoshop like features, this is a a major improvement.
  4. More Smart Art than the 2007 version, and pretty useful ones.
  5. The older Office button has been replaced by a much more useful Office tab with control over printing etc.

On the negative bits, it is quite slower on launch than 2007, and the online help has not been updated to reflect extra options.

On the whole though, I like this better than 2007 edition, and hopefully they will have some more additional features before the final launch.

Sleepless in Hyderabad

Today will be my first night out at ISB. And from what I hear, it is definitely not the last one. And to imagine that it is only the second day of the third term!! How the rest of the term pans out is a scary thought!!

Anyhoo. It seems that there is supposed to be a total solar eclipse today, and that doesn’t happen for another century or so. I somehow seem to miss totality everytime. In ’95 it did not pass through Siliguri, and now Hyd misses it, while I think Siliguri is pretty close to it. Even then I think I will catch up with Mr. Rahu for a while, and then take a nap.

However, Hyderabad has been experiencing pretty amazing weather over the past month or so, and today has been no different. Rains have brought the temperature down significantly, and the skies remain pretty clouded. How successful the eclipse watch is going to be, only time will tell.

These are mad times we live in! Mad!

The scariest semester at ISB is upon us. Term 3 is expected to be one hell of a ride, with more than one submission due everyday, or so I hear. Hopefully I will live to tell the tales!!

The term 2 break was used creatively. Completed the Comp Strat project report, and learned a lot about the pharmaceutical industry in the process. Watched some crappy movies like “Hitman” and “Chaos”‘.

Also watched “Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince“. The movie was a letdown, and I would rate it 3 on 5. Somehow I feel that short movies do not do justice to such books. However, the movie has some sparks of brilliance. Helena Bonham Carter is the highlight of the movie, as she plays Bellatrix Lestrange to perfection. Michael Gambon’s part is also good. Emma Watson is brilliant, and is still being swooned over.

PS: The title of the post is from the Harry Potter movie – just in case you wondered.

Quarter life crisis

Term 2 at ISB got over yesterday. While walking back to my room, a friend remarked that everything was flying past so fast that she was afraid. Out of sheer (false in hindsight) sense of bravado, I remarked that she shouldn’t be afraid, and that it was expected.

I don’t know how convinced she was, but as I got thinking later in the evening, I wasn’t convinced myself. I did not know what was it that troubled me, but there was some fear of months flying by in such hurry that you feel everything else is a haze. It seemed that people are so focussed on the end, that they miss the beauty that lies on the sides of the race track. It reminded me of a couple of line from this forward I once got.

Life is not a race.
Do take it slower
Hear the music
Before the song is over

I did not know what it was that troubled me. It was certainly not about getting a job. After a lot of thought I realized that I was afraid of missing a chance of knowing some amazing people I have met here. It is not about, a term I have come to hate, “networking”. I know I am thoroughly incapable of doing that. It is about making friends. Ones who will last a life time. One of biggest reasons of leaving a job and coming to BSchool was to meet some fantastic people. However, me being the kind of person I am, take a lot of time to open up to new folks, and I was afraid that I would miss a wonderful opportunity.

However, many of these ghosts were buried yesterday evening. We, the study group minus Megha, went out for a thoroughly enjoyed dinner at Ohri’s. This was followed by a gen laccha session at Kirti’s place with music and some fine Absolut and Megha did join us this time. A lot of gen discussions and bitching took place. We do a lot of gen laccha in team meetings, but yesterday was different. Yesterday, we did it without any other reason. Simply for hanging out together. One of the more memorable evenings here at ISB.

As Kirti said, hope we will have many more of these in the future!!